Hellenistic Art: The sleeping Satyr

Michael Lahanas

Sleeping Satyr

Sleeping Satyr

Detail of the Tail

3D View (German Page)

More views: 1 , 2

The sleeping Satyr, Munich Glyptothek, c. 220 BC, sculptor unknown, Barberini Faun (a roman word for the Satyr), Marble 215 cm. The sculpture was found in the Mausoleum of Hadrian in the 17th century. Probably produced in Pergamon. It was found by Pope Urban VIII from the Barberini family. Only after financial problems the statue was sold and finally it was in possession of King Ludwig I. A Satyr (a follower of Dionysos as can be seen by the leaves and grapes on his head, a symbol of Dionysos), drunken, in as some say provocative pose. Look careful and you will see that this is not a human! Can you see his tail on the right side (close to the left leg)? When the Satyr was found his right leg and parts of his left and right hand were missing. Parts were included by the artist Gian Lorenzo Bernini (1598-1680) and Pacetti who were not included later as experts consider these not to represent the original version.

Even if the body of the satyr is perfect the main attraction and a contrast to the body is the head of the sculpture. It is related with the sculpture of the resting Hercules Farnese.

Dionysos (from Dio or Zeus and Nysa a mountain) the Greek god of wine was viewed as the promoter of civilization, a lawgiver, and lover of peace - as well as the patron deity of both agriculture and the theater ( a very remarkable selection).

Another view

Photos of the Satyr by the German filmmaker Leni Riefenstahl famous for her progaganda films: 1 , 2

Sleeping Satyr copy in the Louvre

produced by Edmé Bouchardon (French, 1698–1762). The effects of the weather are visible since it was for some time outside in parks

Sleeping Faun - Christo
Sleeping Faun

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